Anabolic androgenic steroids affect the structure and function of the heart, but that’s not all. In the studies of Karil et al. Carried out on 20 bodybuilders, correlation was found with the use of SAA and the dimensions of the left ventricle. The left ventricular mass (LVM) was 274 g, and only 167 g of physically inactive men. Karila showed that the higher the dose of SAA – the greater the changes in the left ventricle may be.
D’Andrea and partners showed that the abuse of SAA causes (many years after the end of doping) impairment of the systolic and diastolic functions of the heart, the phenomenon is strongly correlated with the doses and time of SAA use. There are also studies showing that short doping cycles (8-16 weeks) do not affect the function of the heart).
Thirteen users of anabolic-androgenic steroids participated in the study, men aged 23.9 ± 4.3 years and sixteen controls from the age of 22.1 ± 4.5 years.
Six men used only one measure, four – two measures, and three people – three different measures at the same time.
The exercise protocol consisted of 60 minutes of running / walking with an intensity of 60% to 85% of the estimated maximum heart rate. First, the exercise began with a warm-up on the treadmill (ProAction BH Fitness, the country of production in Spain) lasting 3 minutes and low intensity. Immediately after the warm-up, the speed was increased every minute in the first 5 minutes until the required intensity was reached and the subjects remained in this intensity range until the end of training. Heart rate and blood pressure were assessed before physical exercise and during a 60-minute rest period after exercise.
Anabolic androgenic steroids contribute to a dangerous rise in blood pressure and it does not drop after exercise. In addition, the SAA group had a much higher heart rate, which means a 24-h heart load (it must work more intensively). Many other studies have shown that SAA have a drastic effect on blood pressure, which has a direct destructive effect on the heart (especially the left ventricle) and the kidneys. Just men’s preparations are considered relatively safe (except for methanabol), but testosterone (in higher doses), anapolon or trenbolone have a tremendous impact on heart rate and blood pressure. That is why SAA can cause such havoc in the cardiovascular system.
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